Today Was One Of Those Days

Everyone has a bad day at work every now and then. You cry, you scream, watch a movie, play a video game, pet your cat, and move on. Bad days come and go and sometimes you can even laugh about them.

Then there are the days that make you question why you are in this field and if you actually have any faith left in humanity anymore. Today was one of those days.

This week has been crisis after crisis. Then I get a new referral for a family. And it’s a doozy. I can’t share details for obvious reasons (HIPPA Privacy Laws and wanting to keep my job and all that). But this family knocked me on my ass, ripped out my heart, stomped on it a few times, and left me totally speechless and crying for all the pain they have been through.

I don’t understand how human beings can be so cruel to one another. I really don’t get it. Then they drag their children through their mess not caring about the damage they are doing. It is so unconscionable. The damage done as a child can have long lasting effects. It can literally change the way the brain operates in the future and not in a good way. I can personally attest to this.

Please pray for this family tonight. I can’t give any details but just pray for comfort, healing, and peace. Also pray that I can hold myself together enough to be of use to this family and that I will have the right words they need to hear.

They’re Coming To Take Her Away

My grandmom is my heart. She is one of the most selfless, loving, kind, and beautiful hearted people I have known in all of my life. She stood by me when I was struggling through YEARS of anxiety and depression and never gave up on me. She gave me faith when I had none, and she never stopped believing I could get better. Her love carried me through some really rough days.

My grandmom is turning 90 in October and mentally I know she is getting older and slowing down but in my head she’s still my energetic grandmom who could always make me laugh and who is constantly blessing people around her. My two aunts have agreed (without my grandmother’s consent) that it would be best if she moved to Texas to live with my Aunt Donna. My Aunt Joan said it is a done deal but my grandmother doesn’t know this yet.

My grandmom has already told me several times she does not want to live in Texas as all her friends and her church are here and she is very active in her church. She said Texas is hot and my aunt lives about 80 miles from anything to do so she feels she will be bored out of her mind. I agreed she should stay where she is comfortable and local. She said she is going to visit my Aunt Donna in November for three weeks to “shut her up” about pestering her to move to Texas and she plans on coming home. Apparently that is not going to happen and my Aunt Donna has already renovated a suite for her and is planning on her never coming back after that visit.

For the record, just because someone is older does not automatically mean you take away their freedom of choice. I could see if someone had Alzheimer’s or dementia or could not take care of themselves. But my grandmother has meals on wheels delivered to her, her landlord is constantly checking on her, she has someone who cleans her house once a week, she spends time with her neighbors. She has plenty of people who look in on her and care for her.

I know I sound like a spoiled brat who just wants things her way, but as I said before, my grandmom is my whole heart and if she moves, I really feel I will never see her again because I can’t afford to go to Texas (nor do I want to as a Philadelphia Eagles fan). I won’t even get to see her for Christmas and this will totally devastate me. I need her in my life and phones calls are not the same (though we talk often on the phone).

Please pray for wisdom for the situation and for my aunts to be respectful of my grandmother and her choices.

Merry Sickmas Everybody!

My husband has been sick since Thanksgiving. We both had sinus infections. Now we both have the flu. Fun times in the Hansen Household. We are calling ourselves the Contaminated Coughing Catastrophes.

I am sick of tissues with snot. I am tired of coughing. I am physically exhausted by the simplest things because I can barely get off the couch. Today was the first day neither of us woke up with a major fever. We decided to be brave and go get some groceries. Our short drive to and from the store and buying groceries took the same amount of effort I expect it takes mountain climbers to scale Everest. We were absolutely exhausted to say the least. My husband and I have rival teams for American Football (Me Philadelphia Eagles, Him New York Giants) and usually we watch separately so nobody has to be annoyed or frustrated with the other. We watched the game together because we were too tired to walk upstairs. Very pathetic I know. But my team did clinch the NFC East Championship so YAY!

We had Christmas with my brothers at my house on December 20th because my one brother was in from Michigan for my grandfather’s funeral. It was a quiet affair and I feel like I let everyone down because I was so stressed from work and trying to get stuff done as well as being depressed in general after losing my grandfather. Next year I will try to do a better job and be a better host.

Then my last day of work December 24th. Everyone else got to leave work at 2pm. I stayed until 5:30pm and then I was forced to leave so I could get to Christmas Eve dinner at my husband’s mother’s house. We had a nice but exhausting evening with everyone and then Christmas with his family was done.

Wake up on Christmas Day and my husband is running a 103 degree fever. Lovely. We opened our few gifts to each other and then spent the day watching movies and sleeping until we had to go to Christmas dinner at his mother’s house. We ate, we snuggled with my niece and nephew. We ignored the fact that their father wasn’t there because oh yeah there’s a pending divorce.

I know it’s probably because I’m sick and exhausted and depressed but I feel like the sun will never shine again in my life. That 2020 will just be another year of the same old same old. I know I sound bitter and resentful and ridiculous, but right now I’m not in a good head space. I missed going to an even I had been looking forward to since October because I was sick. We missed going to see the new Star Wars movie because we were both sick and had to return the tickets. This vacation was supposed to be fun and relaxing and instead it has been snotty and miserable.

I know technically laying around because I’m sick is considered “relaxing” but we all know sick relaxing and real relaxing are two totally different things.

I promise to try to make my next post a little more cheerful. Maybe…

 

 

To My Best Friend Who Just Had A Baby

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You, my best friend, had a baby on Friday! She’s tiny, gorgeous, and perfectly healthy. A new life born to do good, bad and everything in between. You are one more in a string of friends that have recently had babies. Everywhere I go, I am surrounded by adorable pictures of adorable kids doing adorable things.

Outside I coo and I make cute noises and I could just eat up every single one of them. I snuggle the few I’m allowed to see. They are each beautiful in their own unique ways.

Inside I cry, I rage, and I beat the hell out of myself for not doing this thing that is the epitome of womanhood. I can already feel you drifting away from me. It started with you telling me not to come see you at the hospital and then not to visit until you are “ready.”

I get it. You want some private time with the new love of your life. You want grandmom and grand-pop to come and snuggle her up and make her laugh. You want close family to come and adore this life you created and celebrate with you and your husband. The same husband who STILL did not build the crib for her (I seriously want to hit him for that). She’s been alive barely two days and already you are so in love you can’t imagine life without her. I get it. I really do.

But I miss you. I miss our long talks, and our laughter, and our friendship. I miss being able to call you up and get and give comfort. I miss our passion and our absolute faith in God. Did you know I’m struggling right now to know if what I believe is true? How could you? We barely see each other as both of us settled into our careers, me a Social Worker, and you one of the best damn middle school History teachers out there.

I miss all of my friends that have joined the Sisterhood of Motherhood. It is a club I am excluded from. And I am so happy you got in because you wanted this for so long. But I wish I was there too. I wish we could have our kids grow up together and marvel at all the small miracles like when they first roll over, or crawl, or walk, or say that first precious word. But the door has been firmly shut in my face by friend, after friend, after friend and even a few family members. It’s not that you shut the door unkindly. It is just a space I don’t belong and can’t understand because I am not a mother.

So congratulations my dear friend. I am so thrilled about the journey you and your husband are now on. I will miss you but should you need me, I will come running. After all, that is what best friends are for.

 

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Falling Off The Face Of The Earth, And Climbing Back On

I know it has been roughly 2 weeks since I last wrote a blog. Things have been hectic around here at home and I have been so stressed that I could barely get myself through the door and onto the couch most nights. So here is a recap of what’s been going on.

I have all but quit the Edge Challenge. I was so excited. I thought this would finally make a difference for me. But sadly a few blows to my self-esteem occurred, along with a doubled workload at work (naturally without an increase in pay), and then I decided to take a group exercise class and hurt my back so I’ve been unable to workout since last Saturday. I also decided (stupidly) that I would go to the first weigh in for the challenge and found out I had only lost 0.6 pounds. After almost 2 weeks of busting my ass at the gym. Then yesterday the standings came out and a bunch of people have already lost 8% of their body weight so I feel like why should I bother trying? I’m going to wind up a loser just like I always am.

My trainer, Morgan, said we are going to have a chat tonight when I go to the gym (if I go to the gym). I know she’s going to be all peppy and tell me not to quit but I honestly feel like what’s the point anymore? This has been a battle I have been fighting with myself since I was six years old and discovered my love of all things chocolate. Why is this so freaking hard. The pounds pack on so easily, why is it so hard to get them off? Why is this such a freaking emotional battle?

Food is a friend who has turned into an enemy. Food is comforting, it takes away my pain, and it makes me feel better when I’m stressed out and just want to stop feeling my feelings for five minutes because they are so intense I can’t take it. But then after comes the shame and the guilt and the feelings of failure. So that brief reprieve is followed by hours of guilt and body shaming.

Is there an end to this? I don’t know. Tonight I went to Cold Stone Creamery, which is an ice cream place near me, to have ice cream tacos. This is why I am up at 4:30am instead of sleeping. I would like to just get outside my body for one day and be able to objectively look at myself and my life and figure out a way to help myself and stop beating the shit out myself. Can someone please invent a machine that does that?!

My doc increased my depression meds and gave me B-12 shots to take every 2 weeks to boost my energy levels. I’m hoping it helps. I just feel like I have no more hope at all. Life is going to be this endless cycle of feeling bad, working to get by, and never truly being happy at all. Mental illness is a bitch and I hate it with my whole being. But I will keep trying to fight the good fight.

Ta Ta For Now

 

It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye

This week has ended on the worst note possible. This morning I found out one of my friends passed away. Same age as me, only 36. I am not really sure of the details of his death at this point as nobody is really sharing anything, as is their right.

I can’t even begin to describe what a sweet, kind, caring soul this man was. He had a heart of gold and was always trying to make people laugh because his true passions laid in comedy and singing. He loved Boyz To Men and sang their songs like an angel. We were never super close but I knew him well enough to know the world is a little less bright now without him. He came to my New Year’s Eve party two years ago. We had not seen each other in awhile so I was super happy when he decided to come at the last minute. He had moved to Wisconsin recently to be with his family but I always assumed that he would be back when he got some things straightened out.

Lately I have been feeling a lot of anxiety about my mortality. I lost a friend a month ago who was just a little bit younger then me and now my other friend. A third friend has cancer and I don’t understand what is going on. I am 36 and my husband 39. We should not be losing friends at this age. That should be reserved for our 90’s.

Please hug your family and friends close tonight. Let them know how much you care and how precious they are to you, for tomorrow is not promised. RIP my sweet friend. I am glad you are no longer in any pain and can share your voice with the heavenly choir.

The picture of my friend below was created by Angela Capel. I take no credit for it because I can barely draw stick figures.

Royal Scott